Startup costs and dealing with fulfillment are some of the reasons why a lot of people give up on starting their own online store. However, there is a business out there where someone else pays your inventory costs up-front on a bunch of items and takes care of fulfillment on their own. It’s called drop shipping, and it’s basically a method in retail where you aren’t the one that keeps the items in stock.
How it works is that you partner up with a large-scale supplier that has its own inventory. Your part of the job is to deliver customer orders and shipping details, and they are the ones that make sure that the customer gets what they ordered. In this article, we are going to discuss a few tips on how to get started with the drop shipping business.
Get finances in order
There is a beginner’s mistake that you have to avoid, and it’s keeping your . It is bound to confuse you, complicate accounting, and might end up with you personally assuming business liabilities, which can only get you into trouble if you get audited. So, keep your finances separate, and do this by opening up new accounts, such as:
- PayPal account. Since you will most probably accept PayPal, you will need a separate business account.
- A business checking account. All of your business finances need to go through a single, main checking account. This is where you are going to deposit all the revenue that your business creates, and take the money needed for any expenses. This will make accounting a much easier job.
- Credit card. It is essential that you have a credit card dedicated only to your business expenses and inventory purchases. In the business of drop shipping, you will be purchasing a lot of items from suppliers, and chances are that you can get some nifty rewards if you get the right .
Pick a selling platform
For beginners, the best place to start your drop shipping business is . However, when it comes to size, Amazon is the largest online marketplace in the world. Due to it being a retail marketplace, it has a great venue for selling mass-market goods. Now, everyone has heard about this two options, and some people think that they are the only choice you’ve got. But, there are also other choices, such as Bonanza and Ruby Lane.
It is essential that you diversify when selling on these websites, as every one of them has its own kind of visitors. As most websites are free to join, it would be wise to try out more of them.
Find drop shipping wholesalers
Once you know what kind of products you want to drop ship, the first step is to contact the original manufacturer in order to find distributors which are qualified. You need to know that not every distributor is willing to drop ship, but at least you will have a list to work on. The unfortunate fact is that it’s really easy to come across a scam or low-quality info on the market.
There is a paid directory such as which is a decent source of drop shipping wholesalers. On the other hand, you can use Google, but it is essential that you are cautious. You are going to need to dig deep, and often look beyond outdated websites, as some of them may actually be great suppliers. During your search, don’t just look for the word “wholesale”. You should include other terms, such as “reseller”, “distributor”, “warehouse”, “bulk”, and “supplier”.
Promotion is essential if you want people to get to know about your store. For starters, you should come up with a great email list. Research has shown that the ROI on email marketing campaigns is . Next, to that, you should create referral discounts. A referral program is an effective and quick method to gain new customers.
You also need to send samples of your products to influencers. No matter what niche you have chosen to deal with, there are certainly high-ranking influencers that can be of great help when it comes to promoting your products. What you need to do is email them, let them know what your product is all about, and if they’re willing to promote it for you, just send it to them.
Watch your business expand
In time, your business will expand, and you will have to adjust to the upcoming changes. It won’t happen overnight, but once it does, you’ll be reaping the fruits of your success. Once you have grown enough, it might be a good idea to invest in a local cheap where you can keep some of the stock that is going nicely.
The fact about drop shipping is that it’s a simple way to get a business started. Also, it enables you to work with other people’s capital without the necessity to invest thousands of dollars yourself. If you manage your drop shipping business properly, it can be a good start for your own online store.